tv Robert Doar on Child Poverty Programs CSPAN May 22, 2017 11:39am-12:03pm EDT
are in our bedroom and on our body and in our children's bedrooms, giving precise location information out about us, it becomes more important to protect that kind of consent so people are aware of what's happening to their information. >> watch the communicators tonight at the eight eastern on c-span2. >> the brookings institution held a series of discussions on child poverty programs and whether the us should implement universal child allowance program. robert door commissioner of the human resources administration talk about what's worked in addressing poverty, it's about half an hour. >> so before we get started, are going to have our first keynote speaker. i learned to count. our format is the keynote
speaker will be introduced and then they do the talk, then they sit down and we quiz them a little bit. by quizzing might be a little more aggressive but maybe not. then we will have the audience and you will get a chance to askquestions . so we have robert doar, i tell people that we invited approximately 100 republicans and none of them would, so we have members of congress and house and senate so we decided to go with a brilliant genius who is not a member of congress. and so robert is here, robert is, what is he, fellow in poverty at the american enterprise institute. i've known him for at least one, starting when he was the head of the child enforcement program in new york which was
an amazing program and did a lot for kids because they really spent a lot of money in new york and then he went on to runvirtually all welfare programs in new york city , the entire time as mayor. >> that's seven years. so robert, this year what you have to say? >> thank you ron, i appreciate you being given this opportunity. as someone who's spent almost 20 years working in new york city to make our programs work to reduce child poverty i'm glad we're having this discussion.but having said that, let me start by saying that the universal child allowance seems to me to be another step to make the federal government the source of all things. it would at this authors contend established the principle that all children are entitled to public, it's a sound i think but to me and i'm sure to other conservatives there has been some damage done by this widespread belief that all
things come from the government, especially the federal government. what about the principle all children are entitled towards his parents, and neighbors in their community? the universal child allowance means monthly cash payment loaded on a ubiquitous federally issued electronic benefit card with established a financial relationship between the federal government and every city. and in the process, will undermine new rules of the individual, the parent and the family and the neighbor. >> went to, there is very little in the two papers on the impact on worker earnings and laborforce participation in the united states. despite begrudging and i might say very grudging recognition that our work and work support system has significantly reduced child poverty. i got into the social services in new york in the mid-1990s when child poverty as measured by the measure by
chris was 28 percent. it's now 16 seven percent. that's a big drop. why not focus on expanding those gains with greater attention to increasing work and earnings? given that i believe the expansions of non-work tested components, medicaid and ssi have led to reductions in worker earnings, i'm pretty sure that adding this new benefit without the work will increase the work incentives in our program and is important to remember that the way work disincentives work is not through one individual program but through a combination of several programs. so those of us who want to reduce child poverty should be concerned about that. for a household with single-parent into children , a child allowance plus snap and medicaid and without any
earnings is still going to be poor. in fact, their income is still going to be a low 50 percent.but they may be well off enough so as to not work even though it's available so it is possible that we may get more poverty by providing a benefit and increasing less work. my point is that for low skilled parents to escape poverty, you need both earnings and support. i think the balance has already tilted too much away from work, this will take you still further which will make poverty reduction's order. and i guess here i should say that i am not persuaded and i think other experts are also not convinced that the main argument for why we should consider this, poverty for children has grown because of the two regulars implementation of government. in fact i think there reading data shows that that is not involved. i want to be clear.
poverty has not gotten worse because of tendon, poverty has not gotten worse because of canon, poverty among children is still a problem. and i have said for some time that government caseworkers in programs such as snap and medicaid when presented with parents who say they have no earnings, all they want just snap and medicaid should not say that they haven't, that's okay. let me get you some of these, see you in a year. >> instead they should say how can i help you get the job because you and your children and out-of-state poverty and out of food stamps and medicaid. >> .3, the proposals being discussed here could be seen by some as another maybe final step in our federal government saying it's unnecessary. not even work meaning. >> i'm sorry to say that. but i checked and there's
only one word about the absence in these papers and that was in the papers. there's also too well recognition that poverty among children is most often related to single-parent households. i'm not going to go into all the arguments and why we should talk about that, except to say that if we want greater efforts to help poor children and i want them to do that as well. one place to start is that knowledge forcefully and without having to be asked all the family to parents. >> think of it as a credibility thing. you want them to believe your models predict future poverty reduction's if only there they go along with one more payment. well, at least start out by showing you will talk about these things. in a way that makes them believe. >> i don't have time to talk very much about enforcement
except to say the papers say nothing about that program. just one broadly bipartisan squared program, it will bring more than a children million children out of poverty every year and yet one reason we are considering a universal child allowance is because absences are not providing enough. why not at least address these two insurers area. >> especially if you're going to provide a new cash benefit , let the parents at least provide something. , finally, cost. we are already overcommitted in our government but i would say that more spending for children is to pay for was a true facing up to our long-term process. i would prefer to see it perform which reduces our expected spending for retirees or senior citizen or investing programs for children. and this is a place where leadership from progressives
would be helpful in striking a grand bargain for children. now, i know that there may not be a lot of hope for a grand bargain with children. i've had this for a long time since i first saw him talk about it in his book and i'm not going to stop hoping now. >> finally, if we are all going to do one thing, just one thing, is this it? what about training in education, job programs, reentry from people coming home from prison. the employment for disconnected men. we can do a lot more there with less money. >> thank you. >>. >> let's begin with this. >> i think there's a grievance here that some of it was a bit hesitant. but there does seem to be at
least a decade now that we have done a lot for reducing poverty, by encouraging people to work in subsidized support so we have the most successful program the region has ever had is to encourage work and subsidize the work. >> and it worked very well and so we will hear from john and i don't think anybody anything my name about it. >> that's a big thing. >> it represents a huge change on the left, because the left was really drizzly in opposition to this major one. >> and we are human united about women. and whether they really could work. >> worrying about that i think was a legitimate concern. turned out most of them could work did work. now because of the characteristics of some women, some men as well, many
men, is much more difficult for a fairly substantial hope on the job to make changes in the job market, so a big argument on the half of this kind of benefit is that it would be the opposite of less work support, we wouldn't expect there to be a group of people that wouldn't work and we would give them free and clear benefits, that's the idea. we've lost quite a bit, will come back. what's your problem with that through the process? >> the basis of it is that we had this argument about whether abc moms can work . and those who thought they could and it could be the true heroes of welfare reform , they turned out to be correct. in laborforce participation, they say no one's ever
expected or they show once asked what do they do. >> but there is a group, that right now is to be on medication and is not working. we want to know what's going on and my view is that they, they have stepped away from work requirements and are not being engaged. the other thing i want to point out. >> i want to say one more thing. i want to say one thing. we i think through most of the conversation today we have not said anything about a society or the stability and in the welfare programs i ran in new york city, one component of our approach was when people said they could not work through health or physical impairment, there was a for ssi that allow them to have support and i
sometimes think in the rhetoric of year when people say there is no floor for people who can't work, there may be some misperception that that doesn't exist. it does exist and i'm not, and that's, i think that i want to also say that if it wasn't in my opinion correct, that it was not done worse i'd be more concerned but i don't see it. i don't even see it in the very low insecurity, we come back up in the wake of recession, i'm not sure they had to do with. >> they had principle, it really does take into account . if it is the case there's a group in the bottom that does not qualify for ssi or ssdi and they cannot work consistently because of where they live, because of their personal habits, whatever then we have a desire to help their children. there is a rationale or a program like the universal benefit that is not dependent
on work. there's rationale and effort at some level, community, state, town, village to assist those families. i don't know the rationale is for a federal universal benefit that may have unintended consequences for the families that went to work. remember, whenever you want to adjust what you're providing, you're going to have the adjustment that will benefit the person you're trying to help but it also will send a message for providing assistance to a group that may not have needed that and that's what i worry about. you have an entitlementsystem , that allows more people to work, not work and i don't think that's good. >> the issue is the size, and we have 1 billion ledger reviews including by the person i think is most competent is robert moffitt and the effects that are almost inevitably small. i don't think we can show
there's a huge impact on low income, especially through mothers that they are going to stop working. they can get this, $150 a month benefit. here i am informed by my experiences, we had a strong work requirement, we had a modest recession in 2001. the bush administration and others expanded access to snap and changed the rules there. president obama continued that and increase access to public health insurance, increase application processes, you can self medicate in new york now that you do it around the country, and our gains in reducing poverty stopped in that. to the small recession in 2001 and the great recession in 2007 and i believe that happened because there was an ability for folks to net
together a variety of assistances and i think that's unfortunate. >> why are they working now? >> the point around single mothers has started to increase. >> and had and i think that's part of the economy is finally finally coming back and partly because people are beginning to wonder about that. >> even the obama administration began to send messages for the snap program, you know, you really should talk about that. next so i agree with you, it has come back, mostly due to the economy. not changes in the underlying program. >> if they have work, and then jobs are more available and they go to work. >> that's true. >> i should also point out that and this is a long battle, it really takes them way to long. but on wages have read it risen a little bit too so the
fact that the laborforce participation is coming back is due to a variety of factors and i like it that way. i want to continue. i don't want to stop it by providing another benefit for the work. >> response your concerns about nonwork. >> what would you think of a compromise that would include some benefit the bond. >> but would also greatly strengthen the requirements in the foodstamp program . >> you might want to leave medicate out. >> that's a hard one. >> that's legitimate. one of the problems i have is that i'm late to mike in new york and we had some protections for people at the very bottom. we didn't have a firm time limit. we transitioned people to discover state programs and we didn't have a whole family section and we had this ever on people with disabilities that they couldn't work. so i could, i'd be interested in that.
i don't want to, be associated with anyone who wants me to say that the current temperature now as is administered in the state is perfect. it's not. and that may be contributing to the fact that some families are being done by but i keep coming back, where is it in the big data? it's in the data in a significant way. what is in the big data is that in 1993 child poverty measured is 28 percent and it was, it really did feel like this was a problem that could not be solved. and now it's 71 percent and that's a pretty big drop because we need to careful about going backwards. >>. >> i got that. we were agreed and that's because more people work and they get better benefits when they work. >> my position was always
social work you can look a mother in the eye but if you work even at nine dollars an hour, youare going to be better off then you did, if you see that fancy and . >> i, very little discussion about the implication of a federal, federalization system. i think chris said at the ssa administration would run. the new york city, determined as sort of a violent relationship or delinquent people, it's not one of the great programs of all time. i'm not comfortable with that. >> i'm not comfortable with saying we're going to address these programs entirely from the federal government. there ought to be some recognition that we have apparatus in the state that isn't perfect but maybe a better way to address the issue. >> i suggest we read more about that because i like to see an alternative ssa to reedit people are busy and they do make mistakes and giving them another enormous
job like this, the universal would be huge so i'm not sure ssa is a great example although if you could do that . okay. let's talk about fathers now. you want fathers to play a role. >> ironically in the same reform bill, there were reports for mothers were really tough requirements on fathers. they're made by and large pretty well, especially through the first state in three years, the child supportpayments increase a bit. what would you do now to increase child support , we seem to have been, did we flatten out and there are a lot of fathers especially the probability that you have a father who pays child support for this group that we are concerned about is very low. >> i think the progress was very solid in the late 90s and early 2000's. and then it, in a reaction to a problem, that the program could be excessively harsh for the particularly poor and
struggling. it adjusted. and in addition, single moms decided not to apply for snap where there was a clear requirements and i actually think that we're not doing as much as we could drawing on these nonresident parents who could pay something but in a study, i talked to someone in one of the major child programs in a major city and they in an effort to be careful about getting overly harsh orders had almost 50 percent of their new orders for zero dollars. that's not child support collection, that's not helping get money into the household. that's just going to a bureaucratic process that needs some federal performance standard and it's not helping so what i've said is that for single-parent households who are applying for snap , we ought to have a required referral child support when she or he says
that no, i have no agreement and i'm getting no child support. we want to ask themto go work with the child support for healthcare , for something and i associate myself with those who said earlier i think that when you pay child support you're more likely to be positively engaged with your child and that emotional and parental attention is important too. i want that. i don't think you get that. >> to the extent that we can use child support. >> will leave this discussion here to go live now to look at the recent election in france, a country we elected president hassan grew honey to another four-year term. they're both serving as a referendum on iran 2015 nuclear deal with world powers and the vote of confidence that iran is government will help the country's economy.